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SUZHOU, IN SEARCH OF BEAUTIES of CHINA
Map of China

 

CULTURE

Suzhou has a culture of its own. Its language the "Wu" dialect has notably soft tones, is said to characterize the image of city as one of feminine beauty, tenderness, serenity, subtlety and elegance. The other aspects of Wu Culture found in Suzhou, such as its unique styles of Chinese opera, ballad singing, poetry, calligraphy style, and visual arts, reinforce the predominance of the ideal of feminine delicacy over masculine robustness.

Suzhou is well-known for its rich history of exquisite gardening. Suzhou inhabitants, if they cannot afford a courtyard garden, create potted miniature gardens.

The unique cuisine of Suzhou emphasizes fresh vegetables and fresh water fish, and is noted for being low in fat. Famous dishes include Mandarin Fish in Squirrel Shape, Emerald Snails, Eel Paste, Snowflake Crab, Vegetable Duck, Vegetable in Clear Soup, Steamed Pork in Lotus Leaves, Beggar's Chicken, Crisp Rice Crust Soup, and Dongpo Pork. Pastry specialties include Four Happiness Steamed Dumplings, Square Cakes, Osmanthus Lotus Root, Twin Color Beans, and Steamed Buns with Crab Meat.

Suzhou natives celebrate many food festivals during the year. One of the most famous is the "Crab Feast", held in early autumn.